Death toll from Egypt gun battle rises to 52 killed

Africa
By Ahram Online

CAIRO, Egypt - At least 52 Egyptian police officers and conscripts were killed in a shootout with "militants" Friday in Egypt's western desert, according to state-run media outlet Ahram Online, which cited Egypt's interior ministry.

The firefight occurred as police were attempting to raid "a terrorist elements' hideout" in the Bahariya Oasis, located in the desert approximately 370 kilometers (more than 220 miles) southwest of Cairo.

"A number of policemen" were killed in the shootout, the interior ministry said, but it did not provide an exact number.

Police said "a number of militants" were killed, but an exact figure wasn't released, Ahram Online reported.

Reuters, citing security sources, reported that at least 52 police officers were killed, and many more others wounded.